I find myself reflecting, how is it that I have had enormous success (recruited whole teams with exclusivity for every role) with some of the clients and a limited success with others. Clients who ‘tick’ all of the boxes below are the ones that I have had success with, so here is your how to guide to get the most of your recruitment consultant and ultimately secure first-rate employees for your business.
Engage – See your relationship with your recruitment consultant as an equal 50/50 partnership. No one person is more superior than the other and it is only the relationship is on par is when greatness happens.
Communicate – Have open lines of communication and respond to your recruitment consultant when they reach out. At the very least, even if it is a short email that reads - “I’m flat out and will come back to you first thing tomorrow morning” so your consultant knows that you are not ignoring them and that they haven’t worked in vain to deliver. Set realistic timeframes / expectations and stick to them. There is nothing more frustrating than working frantically under immense time restraints to source a ‘golden’ shortlist only to receive total ‘radio silence’ from a client. The ideal scenario is to respond back with feedback the same day you received the shortlist or interview a candidate as this means that the candidates are still ‘hot’ and active and there is a greater chance of locking them in. It’s not brain surgery but simple common sense, time kills all deals and the more time you wait, the more job opportunities can be ‘sold’ to the candidate and the ‘sell’ to get the candidate ‘across the line’ and accept your role is of course more difficult if there is more competition. If interviewing is your thing, communicate with your consultant at the initial stages that this will be the process and the time frames to when you can interview. Stick to these times, make it a priority, and make these interviews happen.
Trust - Don’t hold information back, inform your consultant ‘warts and all’ the good, the bad and the ugly about the job and how it fits into your business. Tell your consultant what you have done so far to fill the role and give them the tools they need to fill the job – a job specification, an organisational chart and if applicable the line managers and the incumbents' name. If you are an internal recruiter, please allow your consultant to talk directly to the line manager to fine-tune the brief as it is only then that the cultural match can be fulfilled. Never restrict them from connecting with line and or see us as a threat but as allies, help us help you! Equally, I have exceptional relationships with both HR/internal recruiters and line managers with businesses that I have had a huge amount of success with.
Listen – Be open to listening and allow your consultant to ‘consult’ to you as, essentially this is what their title suggests – they are consultants and not just a job filler! It is often the ‘round hole square peg’ recruit that is the most rewarding and without consulting this round hole candidate would never fit into your square peg job.
Tap into our market knowledge - It is the consultant who has a mountain of industry knowledge and can inform you if you are being realistic or unrealistic with your expectations.
Meet – Make time to meet them and allow them to walk around the office, as it only then that the consultant can ‘feel’ the culture of your organisation and essentially get the right ‘fit’ for you. How can a consultant get the right cultural match if they have never been on site?
Exclusivity – Lastly but surely not least, give exclusivity. After 21 years recruiting, 90% of the roles I recruit are exclusive and I will always work tenfold harder sourcing a role if it exclusive as I know I am going to fill it, make the placement and ultimately bank the commission.
Success can be measured as all different forms, but in a recruitment consultants world, success means exclusivity, placements, repeat business and ultimately happy candidates and clients. So leave the recruitment piece to the experts, follow these tips, and you too will get the most out of your recruitment consultant.